Vol. #8 Issue #2 Apr-Jun 2003

From Brent and Dina
There has been an exciting event in the Fuqua household recently. Dina and I would like to announce the birth of our daughter, Jaden Piper Fuqua. She was born on Thursday, May 1, 2003 and weighed 8 pounds & 1 ounce and was 19 & ¾ inches long. She had some jaundice early on but is doing great now. She has been a wonderful addition to our family. Jaden has a great temperament and is very sweet. Dina is recovering slowly and has had a great deal of pain since the delivery.

O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD. You hem me in-behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. Psalms 139:1-16 (NIV)

It is unbelievable to think that God knew Jaden before she was born. He made her and has all her days worked out already! It is amazing to look at a little creation like Jaden. It blows my mind that someone could experience that and still not believe that there is a God.

The Fuqua's Prayer Requests

  • For Jaden to be a Godly girl
  • Financial support to grow b/c Dina is taking work off until Fall/2004
  • Safety and details for the camps and trip
  • For Dina to recover quickly
  • Our interns Matt Smith and Aaron Price

Prison Ministry 2003
Each year Hoops of Hope's Prison Ministry is becoming more and more effective. This year our team played in 16 games and shared the Gospel with over 1400 inmates at 8 different prisons. The three keys to this ministry's impact are prayer, people, and follow up.

The United States just went through a tough war in Iraq where strategy was the key to victory. The battle plan was to bomb the sites heavily before sending in ground operations. In our Prison ministry we send out emails and schedules in newsletters so that you, our partners in ministry, can send in prayers and prepare the battlefield for our ground crew which is our team. Your prayers are powerful and effective. Prisons that have been hardened toward our message in the past have had major breakthroughs due to prayer!

The second key is the players. Our players volunteer their time and abilities to make the ministry work. They also take the time to prepare their testimonies and then they are brave enough to stand up in front of hostile crowds preaching the Word boldly. These are awesome guys who are valued greatly by Hoops of Hope.

Finally, we continually strive to improve our means of follow-up. Hoops of Hope is not allowed to correspond with inmates so we plug into other ministries to get these men Bible Studies. We would like to thank the Saints Prison Ministry (www.saints-prison-ministry.org) for their awesome follow-up material. We are not where we want to be with this aspect yet, but we are on the right path.
*Pictures in this section courtesy of Good News Jail & Prison Ministry.

2003 Roster
Take the time to pray for these guys...

Chad W., Ross H., Josh S., Scott M., Chris G., Chris L., Rich R., Brent F., Kevin B., Will B., Russ F., MacDonald S., Nate J., Anthony D., Mike M., Jon W., Nate C., John B.

Kevin's Korner
"... Christ in you, the hope of glory." Colossians 1:27 (NIV)
Over these past few months, people I know who are my prayer supporters have been going through trials. I have had the privilege of lifting them up in prayer and seeing God use these situations to work in many lives. In the world we have seen the war with Iraq and the battle with SARS in China. Instead of being discouraged by these situations I found myself overjoyed. Yes, overjoyed! The reason is that God is giving me the opportunity to work with Hoops of Hope. I love basketball, but the reason I am joining the ministry is because of the Hope. If you have Christ in you then you have the hope of glory! No matter what happens on earth, those who have a personal relationship with Christ can always cling to the knowledge of God's Kingdom being prepared for us to worship Him. It is my desire that every ministry activity I take on with HOH is underlined by Kingdom Goals and Kingdom Purposes so that anyone I encounter can have Hope!

That really is the point of God’s love letter to us, the Bible. Jesus created us all to fully enjoy Him and yet we broke that relationship by our own sin. The Lord didn’t give up rather He came to die for us and reunite us to Himself. He offers the free gift of salvation. All you have to do is receive it, even today, right now! “…yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God”—John 1:12 (NIV)

Boaz's Praises and Prayer Requests

  • To finish the school year strong and continue to make an impact at my building.
  • Unspoken request to lift up my supporters in prayer, some of whom are dealing with illnesses and other tough situations.
  • Praise the Lord for the awesome partners, like you, who prepare the battlefield with your prayers.
  • Praise the Lord for over 30% of monthly support raised in the last 6 months.
  • Hoops of Hope Special Needs- Donations of the following...As we gain more employees our needs grow as well.
    - Lap Top Computer
    - Color Printer
    - General Office equipment and supplies

Testimonies from our Players...
Going into the prisons to minister to inmates has helped me grow as a Christian. It is hard to focus on serving the Lord when your team is down 2 points with 30 seconds left and there is a bad call or something of that nature. I think the prison ministry has helped me focus on what is a game, and what is truly important in eternity. I am still very competitive, but I think building relationships with the inmates is more important. There are a couple of prisons that we tried to visit once a month and that was great because we could build relationships and have a starting point to talk to somebody the next time we went into that prison. It was very interesting to talk to so many men who were getting out of prison soon. I really think the Lord had this in His plans. It also makes our team a witness for God. We can live out our daily lives and not really think about eternity when we are going through our normal schedule like checking out at the grocery store. In the prison it gives us that purpose of sharing what God has done for us. If we can make that a habit in our everyday lives, then God has done a work in us. Rich R.

My thoughts on Prison Basketball...
Sometimes, when I look back on my experiences with prison basketball, I feel guilty. I feel like I'm getting more than I'm giving. The times I remember are not within the lines of the basketball court. The men I've met and the relationships of which I've been a part dominate my memories. The smiles and appreciation from the men inside remind me what I have, and motivate me to take full advantage of the opportunities God has given me. I feel so blessed to know how much God loves and cares for me, and I am reminded of how much He has protected me and continues to protect me. I am so thankful for the opportunity to go and share Christ's love through the game of basketball. Chad W.

Playing in the prisons has been an incredible experience. Seeing the work
of the Lord in the lives of these men has convincingly proven to me that His love
can penetrate the darkest places and the most hardened hearts. I, too, have
grown much through this ministry, learning the power of prayer and most importantly that sharing my faith really isn't about me, but Him. Ross H.